The Malmo Live complex is a stunning architectural vision, a clean cut combination
of angled glass and concrete that houses a congress centre, a five star hotel, two
restaurants, a bar with views across the city, a flexible performance space known
as the Cube and a main concert hall, home to the Malmo Symphony Orchestra.
Nominated for Sweden’s most prestigious architectural award, the Kasper Salin
Prize, the building is fast becoming a new hub of cultural excellence despite being
open only a matter of months.

The audio installation for both the concert hall and the smaller Cube venue were put
out to a public procurement tender. From more than half a dozen submissions, Arva
Trading AB beat off the competition to secure the project. Technical manager,
Ronny Sjostrand adds the detail: “The tender documents demanded a very high
technical standard. We supplied an EASE simulation of the concert hall with
specification for SPL, STI value and equivalent SPL, frequency and STI on every one
of the sixteen hundred seats. Our submission was to install a d&b audiotechnik
system of primarily Vi loudspeakers with T10 and Yi for the delay system. T10s with
V-GSUBs were also specified for the Cube room. The total project also included
sound installation for other parts of this huge complex, which has been described as
“a city within a city’; it stretches to 54,000m2. For Arva it represents a total of eight
months planning and installation work.’

Despite the concert hall being home to the Malmo Symphony Orchestra, the d&b
installation had to be designed for a much broader range of musical performance,
from orchestral pieces to heavy metal rock – indeed the opening concert featured
both these genres. Once the contract was secured, Sjostrand consulted with Jonas
Wagner and Boris Rehders from d&b Application Support.

The hall, at forty five metres long, twenty three metres wide and twenty metres
high is almost twice as long as it is wide making the support of the Yi delay system
a most important facet of the sound design. Yi12s were used for the second balcony
and Yi8s for fills while T10s were employed at the front of the stage and for the
side balcony delays. High power D80 amplifiers were used to drive the main arrays
of Vi8 and Vi12 loudspeakers; the 10D amplifier, specifically designed for
permanent installations was the choice to drive the fills and delays.

The complexity of the installation was helped by the deployment of the new d&b
DS10 Audio network bridge, which offers an interface between Dante and the AES3
digital inputs of d&b amplifiers while also providing distribution of Ethernet control
data. Each unit is able to provide up to sixteen AES3 output channels via the Dante
audio transport protocol through Ethernet, allowing for a significant reduction in
cabling requirements as a large analogue multicore is not required, therefore
producing a reduction in time and cost as well as the impact on the building’s

“Here at Arva, as Sweden’s exclusive distributor for d&b audiotechnik, we are used
to embarking on high profile projects,’ concludes Sjostrand, “but Malmo Live is a
very special venue. We are especially happy that both the consulting company and
the concert house are so pleased with the result.’